6 men arrested over international match fixing

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) Australia’s Victoria state police say six men have been arrested over an alleged international tennis match-fixing syndicate.

The Victoria Police said in a statement Friday that detectives from the Purana organized crime taskforce arrested the men following an investigation into an alleged betting syndicate based in Victoria with alleged links to national and international tennis matches.

It said police are investigating allegations that a number of bets were placed on tennis matches played in both Australia and overseas ”where the outcome was predetermined by at least one of the players involved”.

A police spokesman said the allegations do not relate to matches on the ATP World Tour or at the Australian Open.

The men, aged between 27 and 40, were arrested at locations throughout Victoria.

Police said the arrested men will be questioned about possible offences under Australia’s Crimes Amendment (Integrity In Sports) ACT, including the use of corrupt-conduct information for betting purposes. The laws, passed last year, impose a sentence of up to 10-years jail for match-fixing.

Australia’s Fairfax Media reported later Friday that tennis players were understood to be among those taken into custody.

In a statement later Friday, Tennis Australia said it took the allegations seriously and was ”committed to upholding the integrity of the sport.” Spokeswoman Ann West said the organization was co-operating fully with authorities.